Act 114, signed on July 5, 2012 by Governor Tom Corbett, reinforces the critical need for all drivers to obey traffic control signs. The law aims to increase safety for motorists and emergency responders in areas where flooding or other hazardous conditions exist.
Under the law, motorists who drive around or through signs or traffic control devices closing a road or highway due to hazardous conditions will have two points added to their driving records and be fined up to $250.
If the violation results in a need for emergency responders to be called, the fine is increased to between $250 and $500. In addition, violators will be held liable for repaying the costs of staging the emergency response.
Property owners are responsible for keeping shrubbery, trees, plants and landscaping out of the four (4) foot right-of-way at the edge of the property near the street. these items can cause problems for vehicle and foot traffic visibility, snow plowing, and for underground utilities. Please trim plants that may cover your green address sign so emergency responders are able to see the sign.
If you have contractors performing landscaping on your property, please remind them that there is NO DUMPING of materials (e.g. sand, soil, mulch, stone) into the street. The property owner may be held responsible for damages to road surfaces, clean up of materials going into storm drains,or vehicular accidents caused by the debris.
Please keep in mind that construction work at your property may require overweight truck deliveries, such as concrete, stone or macadam. Heavy weight trucks can sink into the road surface and cause severe damage, especially during hot weather. If you expect this situation you may want to contact the Public Works Dept. for advice on how to avoid roadway damage.
PENNDOT ENGINEERING DISTRICT 5-0
1002 Hamilton Blvd. Allentown, PA 18101
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Ronald J. Young Jr., (610) 871-4555
PennDOT, State Police Urge Motorists to Steer Clear of Emergency Responders Harrisburg (Dec. 4, 2014)
PennDOT and the Pennsylvania State Police today urged motorists to “steer clear” of police, emergency responders, road crews and tow-truck operators while they carry out their duties.
To draw additional attention to the “Steer Clear” law, PennDOT will display a message from Dec. 6-13 on more than 200 electronic message signs across the state. The message will be displayed from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. whenever other traffic alerts aren’t being displayed.
“Please remain aware and move over when flashing lights, flares, or emergency personnel appear on state roadways,” PennDOT Secretary Barry J. Schoch said. “This law is often ignored or disregarded due to speed, space or time. Let our workers, police and other responders focus on doing their jobs and returning home safely every day.”
In October, a state police trooper was severely injured while removing debris from Route 119 in Westmoreland County. The marked patrol car was positioned so that it blocked the right lane of the roadway, moving traffic into the left lane. As the trooper began removing the debris from the roadway an SUV approached the slowed traffic from the rear and was unable to stop in time – striking the trooper.
“When you see law enforcement personnel on a traffic stop, assisting at a crash scene, or tending to a disabled motorist, please move over. If you cannot move over due to heavy traffic, please reduce your speed and proceed with caution,” said State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan. “Your life and that of the first responder may depend on it.”
Pennsylvania’s Steer Clear Law requires motorists to move to a lane that is not immediately adjacent to an emergency response area. Such areas include locations where police are making traffic stops, where highway or construction workers are involved in emergency assistance, or where tow trucks are responding to disabled vehicles.
If drivers cannot move over because of traffic or other conditions, they must proceed at a speed that is “reasonable and prudent,” according to the law. The law applies any time an emergency vehicle has its lights flashing and where road crews or emergency personnel have lighted flares or have posted signs or other traffic control devices.
Failure to move over or slow down can result in a summary offense that carries a fine of up to $250. In addition, fines will be doubled for other traffic violations occurring in these areas. If the violation leads to a first responder being injured, a 90-day license suspension could result. For more information on traffic safety in Pennsylvania, visit www.JustDrivePA.com
Media contacts: Ashley Schoch, PennDOT, 717-783-8800 Adam Reed, PSP, 717-783-5556